Thursday, March 22, 2007

"hello" in russian no small task

I spent the last three hours sitting on a hard cafe stool attempting to pronounce basic Russian words. Ye-, no, ou-zha-, uh, kah-, no, sa-no, no? sa-na? Crap. OK. Ou-zha-sa-na? No? Ou-zhas-na. U-zhas-na. U-zhas-na. The only words that come easily are names of the fictional characters in the dialogs. The sentence comes out something like "Zdrstveeytye, mynya, uhhhh, zavuut Misha" and "Misha" is the only part that resembles a word. To merely utter a formal "hello" is beyond my power. I can't pronounce the first letters, zdr, much less the nine letters that follow. I feel indignant. Shouldn't "hello" be something simple?

Back home my brain feels numb, sitting here on the soft futon, checking my email (which scrolls down the screen in recognizable Latin characters, in a language I can read, usually pronounce, and sometimes even write). All that to say that I have really nothing to report here, but that I'm fond of this orangy text-and-tree piece I made earlier today, before I took up the insurmountable task of saying "hello" in Russian.


Jenny said...

You just let me know when you want to learn how to say, "sit," "give paw" and "give the other one." I'm a master at Russian for canine use only.

And yes, it is so, so hard. Are you up yet?


Vladimir Dahl said...

You could try studying only the easy-to-say words. "I have no shoes," "There is a cake on the floor," "Do you have vodka?" etc.